Comments on watching and making films.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Pride and Glory

Some ideas look great on paper, and then, when you commit them to celluloid, or video, depending on your capture medium, you stand back and look at what you've done and say "That isn't what I had in mind at all...". Somehow, I HOPE that the makers of Pride and Glory had the intelligence and artistic fortitude to step back from what, I'm sure, cost them many millions of dollars and say "You know, I accept the fact that this just isn't that good."

Pride and Glory is a relatively mundane police thriller involving three family members (two brothers and one in-law) who get caught up in an investigation when four cops are gunned down. Ed Norton stars as Ray Tierney, a NYC cop who has been working in the abyss of Missing Persons, when, after the four cops are mowed down in an ambush, is given the job by his police commissioner father (played by Jon Voight), to head the task force, whose fingers are pointed in the direction of his brother Francis's command, as well as his brother-in-law's, Jimmy Egan (played, respectively, by Noah Emmerich and Colin Farrell). As the action unfolds, Ray, who has always been a good cop, has to contend with the idea that, maybe, his brother's aren't quite as clean as he is.

Pride and Glory is not a bad movie, it's just not a good one. It feels pretty flat most of the time, though the actor's all give competent performances. The story feels like a a story from school that you've read a million times before, and are having to read again. There's nothing particularly new, or interesting in this film, which is kind of sad considering the fact that you have Ed Norton, Jon Voight, and Collin Farrell on your roster. Pride and Glory is like a film version of a Shakespeare play. You've seen it a thousand times, in a thousand different ways, and when its over, you wonder why you should care.

To Hollywood script writer's, a note - We get the point! NYC cops are like brothers. You don't rat on your brother, even if he is crooked. We get it! We don't need five movies a year with this premise. 

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